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7 September 2009


CdTe PV maker First Solar appoints CEO

First Solar Inc of Tempe, AZ, USA, which manufactures thin-film photovoltaic modules based on cadmium telluride (CdTe), has appointed Robert J. Gillette as chief executive officer (effective October, when he will also join the board of directors). He succeeds Mike Ahearn, who will continue to serve in the full-time position of executive chairman.

Ahearn says that Gillette has a unique combination of skills and experiences that suit leading First Solar in its next wave of growth.

For the last four and a half years, Gillette was CEO & president of Honeywell Aerospace, Honeywell International’s most profitable business group (with current annual sales of more than $12bn). In this role, he led more than 40,000 associates at nearly 100 manufacturing and service sites worldwide.

Gillette joined Honeywell in 1996 and has served in senior management positions including president & CEO of Honeywell Transportation Systems and president of Honeywell Turbo Technologies. Previously, he spent over 10 years at General Electric.

“Rob has a track record of fostering innovation and bringing new technologies and products to market,” says Ahearn. “He has built organizational capability to enable businesses to scale in complex and geographically diverse markets and he has worked extensively in global markets, including Europe, Asia and South America,” he adds. “He has demonstrated a leadership style that meshes well with our core values and will enable him to form strong working relationships with our management team.”

See related items:

First Solar/juwi CdTe solar farm becomes world’s second biggest

First Solar wins CdTe PV contracts: 55MW for Los Angeles and 550MW for Southern California Edison

First Solar to supply 10MW of CdTe PV panels for Lend Lease’s Australia business

Search: First Solar CdTe PV modules